what do you do with your planes in the winter? - RC Groups
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Nov 08, 2003, 05:36 PM
Registered User

what do you do with your planes in the winter?

as you can see i live in the uk, i have about 6 glow and 10 out door electric, 5 indoor [out door when the wind drops] and a Garage to store them in [ the wife kicked me out of the conservatory when i past 4 planes]. now i have to mothball most of the models till summer comes a knocking . so i strip out the rx and battery packs from the 'slimers' put some oil in the motors and clingfilm them all over to keep out the damp. as for the electric [last year they lived on the conservatory walls but its the garage this year] should i strip out the motors, rx and speed controllers and put them some were dry befor clingfilming them?.
i won't have this problem next year as the garage is getting full insulation and a heater, or i could give the wife the boot
keeping 1 slimer ready to fly [acrowot] and all my indoor models.
so what do you do to protect yours?

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Nov 08, 2003, 06:01 PM
It's the last plane honey
SlowRider's Avatar

I'm fortunate that I can fly year round. The only weather impact is rain, and wind over 20 mph. The temp in the winter rarely drops below 30 deg f. Summers average about 90, we might have several weeks over 100.

I fly electrics only. Like most electronics, it's important to keep the components dry, so whatever you have to do to ensure that, will go a long way towards preserving your equipment.

Nov 09, 2003, 09:02 AM
Registered User
die fliedermaus's Avatar
I keep on flying. We don't get winter in Kansas, just a cool interval between hot as hell summers.
Nov 09, 2003, 09:33 AM
Registered User
Andy W's Avatar
Fly them! At least as often as in the summer..
Nov 09, 2003, 02:35 PM
Registered User
well its high winds and heavy rain over here, boy are you guys lucky, mind you it gives me loads of time to build

Nov 09, 2003, 06:05 PM
tic's Avatar
I donate all my planes to charity at the end of each flying season.. I can then start fresh in the spring with new planes; plus it makes me feel good about myself.. I encourage others to do the same.
Nov 09, 2003, 08:12 PM
Registered User
Andy W's Avatar
I'm from the UK - Midlands. I recall many a beautiful, sunny day during the dead of winter, as well as those long, calm if a little cool evenings.
Nov 09, 2003, 11:03 PM
Frequent flyer
I keep on flying. We don't get winter in Kansas, just a cool interval between hot as hell summers.
Hehe, we get hot as hell for 3 months, followed by 9 months of hell froze over! I fly all winter also, I was out flying micro stuff outdoors saturday, the high was 6 F, finally had to quit when I started to get worried about the ripstop on the IFO breaking!

anyway, like you mentioned, remove the batt packs, but also watch the covering. temp swings can really wrinkle it up and make for some work to repair it.
Nov 10, 2003, 12:07 AM
Registered User
For me the foamies fly all year round. The others get put away for the colder months. The reasoning behind this is that the foamies are easier to prep for flight. They are usually one piece airplanes so assembly at the field is not needed. If not one piece they are usually small enough to store assembled. They are waterproof--handy when fields are snow covered.

BTW they are all electric

Nov 10, 2003, 02:32 AM
ChrisP's Avatar
Each model gets a full blown inspection.
I check the structure, linkages, covering etc. I usually find two or three things that annoyed me when I was operating the model during the year (for example the canopy retention system on the Twinstar) and 'up-grade' the model. I have even upgraded from rubber banded on wings to bolted.
I occasionally do motor upgrades like regular to brushless (just did that on my Pico Jet). Any model with a gearbox gets the gearbox stripped, cleaned an re-lubed.
I cycle the batteries and enter the results in an Excel list. If there is significant degradation in the battery, I buy a new one.
I clean and check my transmitters and other equipment too. The flight box gets cleaned out, tools cleaned and reorganized.

It takes me usually between New Years Day and the start of serious flying the beginning of March doing this at a leasurely pace.
Nov 10, 2003, 01:05 PM
Registered User
Boy are you organised

Nov 10, 2003, 06:37 PM
Sunspot's Avatar


Your efforts are admirable.
Give all your planes away at the end of flying season????

You must be rich.....Fertilizer I suspect.
I hope you are kidding.
No offence.
Nov 11, 2003, 02:38 AM
Registered User
Kevin Murray's Avatar
I fly them all year long.
As for your storage, I wouldn't fuss with pulling anything out of the elecrtics.
As for the slimers, I wouldn't fuss with pulling anything out of them either, I'd just put them out on the curb as is.

Nov 11, 2003, 06:11 AM
Sloping off....
leccyflyer's Avatar
Another vote for keeping them in commission year round.

The way the weather systems are now- completely different than years ago from where I'm sitting- you can never tell whether you are going to have a gloriously warm sunny January day with no wind or freezing gales in August. This summer has been exceptional here in the UK with the best flying conditions for years for weeks at a time. I think we might pay for that over the winter, but I don't plan on putting my models into long term mothballs, just in case.

When the flying does slow down though it is a good time to catch up on maintenance. For engines that involves lobbing in a bit of afterrun oil and encapsulating the oily bit up front in a plastic bag to catch any drips. Make sure that fuel tanks are completely drained (I never remember to do this and sometimes pay the penalty next time out). Sounds like you already do all that.

The models should have a really thorough clean down with a grease-cutting agent, such as isopropanol or similar and during that really good clean down you can make a thorough inspection of all the hinges, linkages, covering edges etc and make any repairs that might have gone un-noticed. You can also cycle and record the discharge characteristics of receiver packs. It'll save time when you do put the models back into commission.

For the electrics in addition you can use the time to check all plugs, leads, solder joints etc to ensure that everything is in order. My models are stored indoors so I don't bother taking any equipment out of them. If your storage area is very damp then taking the gear out might be a good idea as you suggest, it's an opportunity to check for any frayed cables, loose joints etc, but I do wonder about the airframes. Might be worth getting some of the little bags of silica gel that they have in camera bags to soak up the moisture, before you try your clingfilm therapy, though I've never had to resort to that and can't vouch for if it would work.

Good luck and keep flying.

Nov 11, 2003, 08:27 AM
Registered User
vintage1's Avatar
I think there are lots of things to do in Winter.

First of all clean out the workshop and put everything back in place.

Then make an inventory of everything you have you bought on impulse, but haven't actually got around to using, and all the planes that you are kinda bored with that are taking up space.

Then make another list of all the things you really want to build over the winter and fly in the quiet days over Xmas, or next year.

Put everything you don't want on Ebay and clean up. Its not unusual for people out there to bid over new price on some items..

Scan ebay for bits you DO need for next year, compare prices and postage, and place sensible bids.

FIX all the broken models you have so they are ready.

And generally fly when conditions allow, build when you are bored, and get out a few manuals on your latest computer transmitter/CAD software pacakge/whatever, and actually learn what the stuff you already have is capable of.

Natter on teh E-zone to people in sunnier climes.